Personnel Policy Board
October 16, 2008
Members Present: Hon. M. Richard Geiger, Chair; Jerrold Arneson; Hon. Gail Hagerty; Hon. Carol Ronning Kapsner; Rodney Olson; Hon. John T. Paulson; Gladys Schmitt, and Ted Smith
Others Present: Sally Holewa, ex officio
Chair Geiger called the special meeting to order at 8:15 a.m. The special meeting was called to consider a request submitted by East Central Judicial District Presiding Judge, Georgia Dawson, for authorization to advertise for a court reporter at a range above that allowed under Policy 103(C)(1).
Sally Holewa delivered an oral report on the status of the current vacancy and the history of the last three court reporter vacancies. She concluded the report by recommending the Personnel Policy Board approve Judge Dawson's request.
It was moved by Judge Hagerty, seconded by Jerrold Arneson, that the Personnel Policy Board approve Judge Dawson's request to advertise and offer up to step 6 and that it be forwarded to the chief justice for his approval.
Justice Kapsner asked where current ECJD court reporter salaries were in relation to step 6. Rod Olson indicated that it was his belief that current reporters are all paid above that level. Gladys Schmitt questioned whether it was necessary to re-advertise at all since there are court recorders available to do the same work, at a lower salary. Judge Paulson suggested that if we are committed to hiring court reporters, then the court needs to review its step system to see if we can become competitive enough to attract applicants. Chair Geiger stated that to attract an appropriate number of applicants and get them to move to North Dakota, the salary would have to be so high that it would upset the entire basis of our current salary structure. Gladys Schmitt said it causes problems with other employees when one group of employee is treated differently. Chair Geiger stated that he is confident that there are reasonable, legitimate, and fair reasons why court reporters should be treated differently based on the demand for their services, the shortage of reporters, and market conditions. Ted Smith questioned whether an offer up to Step 6 would be enough to attract an applicant. He wondered if the court should be considering other types of incentives. Judge Paulson called the question and a voice vote was taken.
The motion carried, 6-1, with Gladys Schmitt voting against and Judge Paulson abstaining.
The next meeting of the Personnel Policy Board will be Friday, December 5, 2008, at 10 a.m., central time, at a location to be determined.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 8:25 a.m.
Sally A. Holewa
State Court Administrator